List of Super Mario Bros. 3 glitches

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This is a list of glitches found in the game Super Mario Bros. 3. For glitches found exclusively in the remake, Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, see List of Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 glitches.


NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, all names are conjectural.

Airship Glitch

This works in the original version only. If the player loses a life in World 5-Airship, from the world map, from Super Mario Bros. 3, the airship sometimes will move to the other side of Sky Land. If they take the pipe, the player cannot see it. However, if the player goes to the second part of Sky Land, they can still see it. This means that the airship will be stuck and out of bounds. [1]

Air Walking

Mario "air walking"

The player must be Raccoon Mario or Tanooki Mario to perform this glitch. In a level with quicksand, Mario must run and fill the Power Meter, or be using the P-Wing. Afterward, he must touch the quicksand and jump right after. Flying up, Mario will appear to be walking while flying up and back down.[2] This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions.

Ball-sounding Brick

In World 5-6, the player should use a P-Wing to fly right over the entire level. Once the player sees the pipe, drop and hit the brick all the way to the left of the row of bricks above the pipe. It should make the sound of when a Bob-omb explodes, and the background will flash pinkish as if the player collected the Magic Ball.

Boomerang Brothers/Lakitu 1-Up Glitch

When stomping on chains of enemies to get increased points and 1-Ups, if the fifth or later enemy is a Boomerang Brother or Lakitu, it will register as a 1-Up instead of the next point value (i.e. 100-200-400-800-1-Up instead of 100-200-400-800-1000). This can be achieved in Worlds 1-3 and 2-4 with a Boomerang Brother, or 5-7 with a Lakitu. This glitch was fixed in Super Mario All-Stars.

Brick Blocked

This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions. The player must go to World 3-6. When there is a red Koopa Troopa walking near a brick (with another brick above the first), they must throw its shell at the block. It will release a Super Leaf to collect. If the player attempts to break the block, it will not break.[2]

Bricks as Coins

Near the end of World 3-3, there is a 2-by-2 assembly of coins. If the player uses a Switch Block to turn them to blocks, and hits either of the lower sets of bricks, the upper two will act as coins.

Bowser Never Dies

Very rarely, if Bowser is defeated with a hammer while he is in midair, he will fly upwards and never return down. Since the timer has stopped, the player will have to reset the game.

Bye Bye, Boom Boom

Boom Boom flying through the wall

This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions. Mario must have a P-Wing in one of the Boom Boom battles where Boom Boom can fly. When he is about to do so, Mario must be exactly above him. Boom Boom will fly through the ceiling. However, since he is technically not beaten, the Magic Ball will not appear. The player must wait until the time runs out to retry.

Coins as Bricks

This works in the original version. On World 2-3, if Mario activates the Switch Block, then goes to the end of the area that has the two Koopa Troopas in the half-pyramid area, even though all the blocks are turned into coins, touching the coins on this structure will cause them to act like regular bricks.

Death by P-Wing on World 8-Sprite of a Airship from Super Mario Bros. 3Jets

If a player uses a P-Wing on World 8-Sprite of a Airship from Super Mario Bros. 3 and continuously flies as high as possible, the player may suddenly die from an unknown or invisible object.

Default Used Block

In World 8-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3, the player must go through several doors in order to battle Boom Boom. There are some ? Blocks which contain items near a door. If Mario hits one of these blocks and enters a door quickly, before the item appears, the next time he goes to that area the block will be permanently used. It will stay there until losing a life or completing the level. This has been known to work in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions, though it has not been tested in Super Mario Advance 4.

Disappearing Fortress

The player must make sure an N-Mark Spade Panel is put on a position occupied by a fortress on a map, and then play the Matching Game, and the fortress will be defeated without it actually being done. However, the lock will not open, or alternately the bridge that defeating Boom Boom would build on the map will not be built. As a result, if the fortress that the N-Mark Spade Panel occupied the position of was World 4-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3, World 6-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3 1 or World 6-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3 3, it will be impossible to get to certain areas on the map and the only way to get out of the world will be to use a Magic Whistle.[3]

Donut Lift Fall-Through Glitch

Donut Lift glitch
Mario falls through.

If Mario is standing on a falling Donut Lift and another Donut Lift is under him, he will simply pass through it. This glitch was fixed in Super Mario All-Stars.

Extended 1-Up Mushroom Theme

The player must have Raccoon Mario wag his tail a fraction of a second after collecting a 1-Up Mushroom to hear an extended 1-Up sound effect. The exact moment to wag Mario's tail at 1/12 of a second after the 1-Up icon appears.[2] The two sound effects will conflict, causing the game to play extra notes at the beginning of the 1-Up theme. This glitch only works in the original version.

Audio.svg Extended 1-Up Theme - The sound that plays when the player executes the Extended 1-Up Theme glitch.
File infoMedia:SMB3 Glitch Extended1up.oga
Help:MediaHaving trouble playing?

Fireless Bowser

It is possible to remove Bowser's ability to spit fire. It works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions, but not in Super Mario Advance 4.

The player must use a P-Wing before entering World 8-BowsersCastleSMB3.png. After climbing the diagonal corridor protected by Roto-Discs, before descending, the player should collect the hidden 1-Up Mushroom. Then, the player should crouch and fly between the spent block and the ceiling, then stand up. The player will glide through the wall (this is not necessary for the trick to work, but makes it easier to continue without losing the P-Wing power-up). There are actually two separate Bowser rooms and this trick requires that the player makes their way to a specific one. The easier path to Bowser goes through a room with lava and Donut Lifts, but the trick cannot be performed if the player enters the door at the end of that path. The other path to Bowser goes through a room with lava and solid platforms. This is the one where the player should enter the door to Bowser's chamber. However, reaching the correct door / chamber without losing the P-Wing can be difficult. Normally, reaching this room requires the player to pass a Thwomp that is made more-difficult because the P-Wing slows the player's descent, causing the player to lose the power-up and the trick cannot be performed. There is a way to reach this room without encountering the Thwomp. The player must take the easier path to the room with Donut Lifts over lava. The must not enter the door to Bowser's chamber. Instead, they should crouch and fly between the statue and the ceiling and the player will be forced through the wall. This will lead to the other Bowser chamber. The player should not squeeze through the ceiling a second time, because the player will be stuck in the side of the screen until the time runs out.

After entering Bowser's chamber, the player should fly straight up, then over the wall to the left. The player will land in Bowser's alternate room and fight him there. He will make belching motions, but will be unable to produce fire. Bowser also cannot hurt the player when crouched, so the player can easily defeat Bowser by simply staying crouched in the middle until Bowser's final jump, then simply move out of the way and let Bowser fall through the floor.[2][4]

Flame Cards

A glitched card from Super Mario Bros. 3 This glitch only works in the 2 Player Game of the original version. After playing the battle mode enough times, both brothers will enter the boxes and ladders bonus stage. When player 1 pauses as a box goes through a plumber, a flame will appear as a captured goal card. Flame cards can be used in combinations that increase the number of extra lives.[5][2] It can also crash the game if a player gets the 254 lives combo but loses the round.[6]

Fly Through the Wall

Mario into the wall

This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions, but not Super Mario Advance 4.

The player has to go to World 8-BowsersCastleSMB3.pngBowser's Castle. After passing the Donut Lifts, the player will have to take the upper route. The player will follow the route until Mario or Luigi reaches the door at the end. Instead of entering it, the player must fly to the Bowser Statue just before it and ducks. The player ducks on top of the Bowser Statue, and after doing so the player has to fly through the wall. This will make the player end up in the room that would have been reached if the player had taken the lower route found after the Donut Lifts.[2] In Super Mario Advance 4, there is a block added above the statue, eliminating the opening. Furthermore, each room is a separate map, thus if the player does manage to move through the wall, Mario or Luigi would only go as far as the room's boundaries before losing a life.

Another type of glitch similar to this is also possible. By ducking and jumping at the top right corner of any wall in any level, then releasing the down area on the +Control Pad, the player will go through the wall. For some levels, such as the World 1-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3, it acts as a shortcut; for others, it simply leads to an empty area.[7]

A similar glitch can be achieved in World 7-1. If the player has a P-Wing and crouches above the first Hidden Block containing a 1-Up, Mario or Luigi will pass through the pipe to the right, and then reappear on the left side of the screen. This glitch was removed in Super Mario Advance 4 by moving the 1-Up one tile to the left.

Goal Statue Mario Glitch

A sprite that appears when the glitch is successfully performed. Note that this is not the only sprite to appear; various others may also appear.

This glitch is possible in the Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario Advance 4 versions of the game. To perform this glitch, the player must hit the button to transform from Tanooki Mario to Statue Mario right as Mario collects a third panel that matches the other two from the goal. If done correctly, the ending will play out normal at first, but a single sprite will appear on the screen and the game will soft lock.[8] If the glitch is performed in the Super Mario Advance 4 version, to see the effect the player must watch the replay if it is possible.

Green Brick or Donut Lift

The green brick

This glitch is found in World 3-6. To do this glitch, the player must hit the first red Koopa Troopas in the level, then grab the Koopa Shell and, once the screen scrolls to the Donut Lift on top, throw the shell right and have it hit the coin block below. As long as the player does not step on the Donut Lift below, once the screen scrolls over the coin block at the right time, the bush on the right will turn into a green brick. The green brick will behave like a normal bush. The exact effect can happen with a Donut Lift near bushes, except the player can step on one for a specific amount of time.

This glitch was fixed in Super Mario All-Stars.

Gray Tanooki Mario

As Tanooki Mario, if the player presses B Button right as Mario goes down a pipe, he will turn gray, but not into a statue. However, after the player leaves the pipe, Mario will return to normal.[2]

Gray Hammer Mario

Hammer Mario is gray.

As Tanooki Mario, if the player grabs a Hammer Suit and turns into Statue Mario right before, Hammer Mario will have a monochromatic color scheme, as if he was made of stone. However, he cannot go back up the pipe that leads him out of the room, leaving him trapped.[2] This was fixed in Super Mario Advance 4, but not in Super Mario All-Stars, where Mario turns brown instead of gray.

Hammer Sliding

The sliding glitch from Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES).

This glitch can be found in World 6-10, and can be achieved in all versions of the game. The player follows the route until they reach a pipe with the Hammer Suit in it. If Mario enters the secret room and hits the Mega ? Block, then slides into the Hammer Suit, he will still slide even with the Hammer Suit on. This is most likely an unused sprite, because Nintendo possibly wanted Mario to slide with the Hammer Suit, but then it would just impersonate a turtle on its back.[9]

Hit Switch Block from below

If the player flies directly under a block containing a Switch Block, it is possible to get "under" the block and activate the Switch Block from below.[2] This can also be done with ? Blocks with power-ups in them. This still works in Super Mario All-Stars.

Hitting a Block at the Bottom of the Screen

SMB3 Blockoffscreen.png

In World 1-1, there are some Koopa Paratroopas. Mario needs to jump on one of them when they are at the highest point of the bounce. Mario will go offscreen and will not come back. He is actually in the bonus area although the screen did not scroll there. If he hits the block that has the 1-Up Mushroom, the block is visible on the bottom side of the screen while it is being hit.

Ice Block Magic

By grabbing an Ice Block at the exact moment a Buster Beetle grabs the same one, both Mario and the beetle will be holding an Ice Block.[2] This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions.

Infinite Donut Lift Stand

This was shown in a Super Mario All-Stars Limited Edition Super Play video. To do this, Mario must stand on two Donut Lifts and one of them will not fall.

Infinite Whistles and Infinite Toad Houses/Spade Panels

This glitch has not been tested outside the Super Mario All-Stars version. However, it should be impossible in Super Mario Advance 4 and most likely would require getting a game over on purpose in the original due to the lack of a save feature. In Super Mario All-Stars, the player must start a new game, get two Whistles, save and quit, then return to this save-game. The castle will remain destroyed, and the Hammer Brother still gone, but all other completed levels, Toad Houses, and Spade Panels, will re-open. The player can then replay World 1-3 to get a third Whistle, and replay any other levels required to get any other extras they wish. The player must then save and quit, return to the game, and repeat these steps as many times as they want, or until the player's inventory is full.

Invisible Bricks

This glitch works in World 5-Sprite of the Tower from Super Mario Bros. 3Tower. First, the player must start the level with a P-Wing. The player must fly to the area full of bricks. (There should be two Micro-Goombas there too). The player must then fly to the pipe, then go above it, and keep going right until they get over the pipe into an area behind it. There is also a brick with a 1-Up Mushroom back here. Over to the left, the player should see a wall of bricks. Mario must then fly over to them and whip them with his tail to make a spot to stand on. The player must then make Mario fly upwards off the screen for a while, they start seeing "invisible" blocks being broken at the very bottom of the screen.

Invisible Mario

In World 3-9, the player should duck on top of the level's white platform. By doing so for five seconds, Mario drops into the background. The player must then head into the nearby pipe; Mario comes out invisible on the other side. Mario cannot be seen, but he may also not be harmed by enemies while like this. Additionally, running into an enemy allows the player to see a blue silhouette of Mario.[10]

Invisible Muncher

At the end of World 7-Pirahna Plant Map SMB3.gif 2, Mario must fly up to the top of the small pipe at the end. By landing, Mario will progressively lose all his power-ups for an unexplained reason until he eventually dies. This glitch only works in the original version.[2]

Koopa shell does not break Brick

This glitch is easiest on World 4-1. At the two blocks where the red Koopa Troopa walks, the player has to make the brick and ? Block on the other side be partially showing. Then, the player must kick the red Koopa Troopa's shell into the two blocks. It will bounce off the brick. It works in all versions, and happens because the game is not designed to show only half of the brick breaking sprite.

Koopa in Bricks

This works in the original version. On 2-3, if the player activates the Switch Block, then goes to the end of the area with the two Koopa Troopas in the half-pyramid structure made out of bricks, when the coins revert back to blocks, both Koopa Troopas will be stuck inside or between bricks and unable to be jumped on. Moving the screen away from this structure and then bringing it back will remedy this glitch.

Mario Water Walk

Invincible Fire Mario above the water

This glitch works only in the Family Computer version. To do this glitch, the player must go to Water Land with at least one Whistle in the inventory. Then, the player must get a Hammer (one of the world's Hammer Brothers owns one) and use it to break a rock blocking the way to the Boat and board it. While in the boat, they should use the Whistle. Mario will be in the Warp Zone. The player can move +Control Pad to left and Mario will leave the place and move him as if in a boat. If the player goes far right, the screen will move and reveal a black background and the world numbers will move too and the game will turn glitchy. Mario can move left again. After a long time, a screen with lots of random tiles can be seen, including the unused castle sprite. After that, the player will be back at the Warp Zone map.

Misplaced particles

This glitch seems to only work in World 5-2. To perform the glitch, find the secret Tanooki Suit. Next, get to the end of the level without being harmed. Fly over the goal, and when Mario starts falling, turn into a statue. The smoke from the transformation will appear by the box if done correctly, and Mario will teleport where the smoke was.

Miss the Item

The game can not stand with two or more items in the screen, so, if there is an item in the screen and another appear, the first item will disappear.[11] This glitch works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions.

N-Mark Spade Panel glitch

An N-Mark Spade Panel may sometimes spawn on top of a Hammer Bro, potentially causing a softlock as both the Hammer Bro and N-Spade card eternally move around the map on top of each other, unable to separate.[12] The panel may sometimes spawn out of bounds on the ground map of Sky Land.[13][14]

Off-Screen Misplaced Smoke

With Tanooki Mario or Tanooki Luigi, the player must enter a Koopaling battle, then fly up to off-screen and turn into Statue Mario or Statue Luigi. The "poof" smoke will be in the ground, however, Mario will not be there.

Pipe Bug

Mario goes down the pipe's side.

This glitch is only possible in the original version. This is a glitch from World 3-9. In it, the player plays with the Ice Blocks on the right side of the pipe as follows: Mario ducks, getting rid of the bottom three Ice Blocks on the right side of the pipe, but keeping the Ice Block on the far top. Then he must duck and jump and he will suddenly go down the side of the pipe. Fire Mario can still shoot fireballs, but Mario will not be able to get out of the pipe. The player can just scroll left and right, but Mario will not appear. Moreover, the player will not return to the map screen until five minutes after time runs out. This glitch is also possible in Worlds 5-2 and 7-5.[2]

The glitch was fixed in Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario Advance 4 by simply shifting the Ice Blocks away from the pipe and/or changing the shape of the structure.

Pipe death glitch

In World 5-6, it is possible to go through the pipe at the end of the level too quickly and cause Mario to die.[15] This glitch was not fixed in Super Mario Advance 4.[16]

Power-Up Cycle

For this glitch to work, the player must go to any level, but preferably World 3-9, as Super Mario. About halfway through the stage, the player must come across Jump Blocks between two Ice Blocks, and hit the middle Jump Block from the top to get the Fire Flower out. Remove the Ice Blocks on the right and allow the Bob-omb to walk into the Ice Blocks on the left. The Bob-omb will turn around into the Fire Flower, and if Super Mario touches the Fire Flower and Bob-omb at the same time, he will quickly cycle through: a discolored Frog Mario, Super Mario, and end up as Small Mario.[17]

Power-Up While Getting Hit

If Small Mario takes a Super Mushroom and is hit by an enemy at exactly the same time, he will get the 1000 points for the Super Mushroom, and the "get mushroom" sound effect will sound, but he will still die. Similarly, if Mario takes a 1-Up Mushroom and dies at the exact same time, the 1-Up chimes will sound, but the game will act as if he just lost a life normally.

"Running in place" Glitch

To perform this glitch, the player must go to World 1-3 and crouch on the White Block. Then the player must run behind the blackness and the player will appear at the hidden room with the Whistle but Mario or Luigi will be "running in place." The glitch will end when the Toad reaches the "far away land" part in his speech. This glitch works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions.

Secret Area Behind Bonus Level

The player must first use the through the wall glitch in the area the Tanooki Suit is found in World 4-5. After reaching the other side of the wall, the player must then jump on top of the bonus area quickly. They then have to leap forward off the top of the wall. They will find a secret area, consisting of a pipe and a level ending. The Super Mario All-Stars version of the room is slightly different.[18]

This can possibly be a leftover of the Family Computer version's World 5-1 exit.

Secret Box

The secret box

This glitch is only possible in the Family Computer version of the game. It is recommended that the P-Wing be used for this. At the end of World 5-1, after entering the pipe at the end of the stage, the player must fly up to the top of the blocks behind the pipe, and run across. The secret area that appears at the beginning of the stage will be below the player, and the sound the treasure box makes when it appears in that area will play. The player must then land back at the bottom of the stage, and head to the end of the stage. The Walking Piranha and cards will appear glitched. When the stage is completed, a box will appear on one side of the stage. It is possible to make the box land on the side the player will leave the stage and collect its contents, but the "COURSE CLEAR! YOU GOT A CARD" text will appear glitched.[19]

It is impossible to do this glitch in the NES version as well as Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario Advance 4, as the goal was moved to the same area as the level.

Shell in the Wall

Shell in wall glitch

The exact method to activate this glitch this glitch is uncertain, but in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions, it is possible to throw a Giant Koopa shell (and possibly an ordinary one) inside a solid wall.

Small to Fiery

This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions. Whether it works in Super Mario Advance 4 is moot because a Fire Flower changes Small Mario to Fire Mario normally in Super Mario Advance 4.

This glitch is in World 5-7. The player starts the level, and Mario must be Super Mario. Mario must jump into a block to make a Fire Flower without getting it right away. Instead, Mario collects the first coin to the right of the flower and it starts to flash. Then, a Micro-Goomba hits Mario so that he can downgrade to small, and he grabs the flower, and he becomes Fire Mario immediately.[2]

Somersault Float

Mario performing the somersault float glitch

For this glitch to trigger, Mario needs to have a Starman and a Super Leaf. When Mario is using the Starman, his jump animation is replaced with a somersault animation regardless of the power he currently has. Mario must be floating down the same time the Starman wears off, and once does, Mario must keep floating and if done correctly, Mario will keep somersaulting and floating at the same time until he reaches the ground.

Somersault Glitch

Vine glitch from Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES version).

This glitch can be performed in levels 3-8 (as Raccoon Mario) and 6-10. Mario needs to start the level with Starman (without being Small Mario or wearing a Frog Suit). The player must then quickly break a brick with a Beanstalk and climb on it. Mario will still somersault after he loses his Star.[9] This glitch works in all versions of the game, and ends once the player lands after falling off the vine.

Starman Glitch

In any level with a continuous Starman (e.g. World 7-3), if Mario or Luigi grabs another Starman at the exact moment that the music from the previous Starman ends, then the next Starman will still activate, but the level music will continue to play instead of the Starman music.

Statue Door

Firstly, the player must get a Tanooki Suit and use it. Then, they should go to a level which contains a door. They should then turn into Statue Mario right above the door and press up on +Control Pad while in front of it (while Mario still Statue Mario). He enters the door normally, but a small fog will appear above the door and Mario will fall from it.

Stay in or go through a ? Block

If the player stands on a platform that goes directly under a ? Block and hits it, depending on how high they jumped, they eitherend up inside the block or go through it. Either way, an item comes out, and if they get stuck inside a block, a simple jump gets them out. This is possible in World 5-4, near the start.

Strange Death #1

This can be done in the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions. Mario must go to World 3-9. He must be small. When there are many bricks above him, one contains a Super Mushroom. Mario must release it and let in move to another block. He must hit the block the mushroom is on, and a nearby Para-Goomba will automatically fall off-screen, as if Mario defeated it.[2]

Strange Death #2

This works in the original and Super Mario All-Stars version, in World 4-3. The player must play normally until he sees a short row of bricks, with a Buzzy Beetle on top and an upside-down Spiny on the bottom. Mario must go under the Buzzy Beetle, but be careful not to let the Spiny fall down. If he hits the block with the Buzzy Beetle, the Spiny will fall off-screen as if defeated.[2]


In World 5-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3Fortress 2, the player can jump on top of the pipe and up the solid blocks above, becoming wedged between that area and the right side of the screen. The player can then jump to the top of the ceiling and "crush" Mario, losing a life. In Super Mario All-Stars, he no longer loses a life.[2]

Tanooki Mario Death

In the beginning of World 5-2, If Mario has a Tanooki suit, he must transform to a statue on the slope, then he slides down the slope to the far left of the screen, and loses a life.[20] This glitch was not fixed in Super Mario All-Stars.

This can also be performed with the first slope in World 2-2, although it requires cheats to do so.

Transparent Shoe

What happens when the plater attemps to hold spiny while riding a shoe in Super Mario Bros. 3.

This glitch only works in the original version. In World 5-3, with a Super Leaf or Tanooki Suit, the player must hit a Spiny and hold its shell. While doing so, Mario has to get into a Kuribo's Shoe. The shoe will become transparent and Mario's clothes will become black.[2] By kicking the shell, the shoe reverts back to normal.

Underhanded trick (「裏技」)

Page 231 of the Super Mario Complete Encyclopedia (「スーパーマリオ<span class="explain" title="オールひゃっか">全百科</span>」).
Comic illustrating the underhanded trick in the Super Mario Complete Encyclopedia

This glitch is explained in the Super Mario Complete Encyclopedia, a book edited by Shogakukan in collaboration with Nintendo. In the final battle with Bowser, when in Small Mario form or when crouching in the other forms, the lower part of Bowser's body cannot hurt Mario. This glitch works both in the original Super Mario Bros. 3 as well as Super Mario All-Stars.[21]

Untouchable Tanooki

Statue Mario, having entered a Goomba's Shoe.

To do this glitch, the player must land in a Kuribo's Shoe while in statue form. Mario will be gray, and everything will play normally, except Mario will be invincible. However, Mario cannot enter pipes, so he needs to obtain another power-up to enter them.[2] This works on both the original and Super Mario All-Stars versions.

Vine cutoff

Cut vine.png

In World 3-8 or 6-10, hit the block to spawn the Beanstalk, and scroll it offscreen while it is still growing. When the player moves back to the block containing the Beanstalk, its upper half will be cut off.

Wall Jump


When Mario's foot catches off a pipe or wall, he can jump again to do a Wall Jump.[2] This is because when the player momentum goes against the wall, the player actually gets partially inside the wall, enough that the game thinks that the player is standing on a solid platform (due to the fact that every non-sprite object in a level is made up of 16x16 pixel blocks, and the player's feet touches the corner of that block as "platforms") before being pushed back out.

Warp Directly to the Princess

Glitched pipe
Mario traveling through the invisible pipe that leads to Princess Toadstool

In World 7-1, an invisible pipe can be traveled to directly arrive at Princess Toadstool. The glitch is very complicated, and is mainly due to jumping to an unknown region containing an invisible Jump Block, resulting in wrong instructions by the game. The game has to have the player place some shells at the right spots, stand at exactly 232-240 on the x-axis, jump to an exact spot, hold a specific shell, and have exact amount of enemies onscreen. The glitch is also made easier if the player is able to fly using a tail-related power-up, Tanooki Suit, or P-Wing, though it is not necessary. If the player manages to enter the invisible pipe, the player will glitch to Princess Toadstool's room. Bowser is never seen throughout the glitch, since the battle is skipped. This glitch is popular among speed runners.[22][23][24]

In the Super Mario All-Stars version, the player can enter the invisible pipe; however, it will not warp the player to Princess Toadstool's room. Instead, the screen will scroll back up, and return the player to another part of the level.

The glitch is fixed in Super Mario Advance 4.

Water Wing

Mario or Luigi must be under the effects of a P-Wing and go in the water. If he takes damage, his Power Meter will remain full as long as he stays in the water.

White Block Glitch

Luigi going through the Mega ? Block after using a White Block.

In the World 7-8, there is a White Block. The player must duck on it until they fall in the background and go to the pipes with a Ptooie on two of the pipes. They must into the left one. If done correctly, the player can jump through the Mega ? Block.

White Block Invincibility

A glitch
Mario is invincible.

This can only be done in the original version. By jumping down a Venus Fire Trap-inhabited pipe in World 5-7, the player can use the White Block to head behind the scenery. The player must then use the pipe to get back to the normal level before this wears off. If done correctly, Mario cannot be touched by anything (power-ups included). [2]

World-4 Fortress 2 alternate goal

In the secret area of World 4-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3 2 with the Directional Lifts, if Mario manages to enter the left end of the U-shaped pipe from the side, the screen scrolls down past the level into an empty area; after a period of time, it reaches the top of the room, where Mario is invisible and cannot interact with the level but can collect some invisible coins and make some Jump Blocks appear. There is also another invisible pipe that can be entered, which allows Mario to exit the level as if it were a non-fortress level. Finishing the level this way does not unlock the bridge needed to access World 4-Airship, from the world map, from Super Mario Bros. 3; the only way to leave World 4 is to use a Whistle.[25]


Other programming anomalies that are not glitches are listed here.

Color-changing Mario

To perform this glitch Mario must be in World 3-Sprite of Fortress from Super Mario Bros. 3 1. Mario must go through the passage leading to the blue platform above water, and it will change color to the color of Fire Mario or Luigi. However, this does not always happen, and it may take a few tries.

Hammer Brothers Continuous Movement

If there are two Hammer Brothers on the map and they move into the same space, the game will allow them to move again until they are not on the same space which can lead to them getting stuck with each other and not stopping.[26] This is because the game sets rules for the Hammer Brothers' movement. When the player beats or fails a level, and there is more than one Hammer Brother on the map, then each Hammer Brother will move to an adjacent space. If the space is a fortress, Toad House, airship, uncleared panel, or already occupied by another Hammer Brother, then they will move one more space, unless that spot has already been cleared or occupied by Mario or Luigi. In that case, they will move again. This will keep going on until the Hammer Brothers find a spot that fits within the rules.

Hammer Brother Moving

To make this glitch occur a Hammer Brother must walk onto a moving Spade Panel. The panel will get stuck to the Hammer Brother and follow it until it stops walking.

Strange Smoke

It is possible for a Super Leaf to overlap a pipe. When this happens, and Mario goes through the pipe, Mario will still get the power-up. However, since Mario cannot be seen, the smoke is seen without Mario.


  1. ^ Super Mario Bros. 3 - glitch collection
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Super Mario Bros. 3 - glitch collection
  3. ^ Super Mario Bros. 3: Fortress Disappear Glitch
  4. ^ Super Mario Bros. 3 Bowser Fire Glitch
  5. ^ TMK: Flame cards
  6. ^ Video Game Glitch 253: Super Mario Bros 3 (NES) Crash!
  7. ^ Super Mario Bros 3 - AWESOME Wall Glitches!!!
  8. ^ YouTube - Super Mario Brothers 3 Glitch 【スーパーマリオブラザーズ3小さな欠陥】
  9. ^ a b Super Mario Bros. 3 Somersault Glitch & Hammer Slide Glitch
  10. ^ YouTube - Super Mario Bros. 3 Glitches with Mike Matei
  11. ^ Super Mario Bros. 3 NES - 2 Glitches
  12. ^ SuperNickid (April 1, 2017). Super Mario All-Stars Super Mario Bros.3 Hammer bros. and N-spade soft lock glitch. YouTube. Retrieved March 14, 2023.
  13. ^ SuperNickid (April 1, 2014). Super Mario bros. 3 N-Spade glitch. YouTube. Retrieved March 14, 2023.
  14. ^ MrPyt1001 (April 4, 2017). Super Mario Bros 3 Allstars - N-Spade Glitch. YouTube. Retrieved March 14, 2023.
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ Super Mario Bros. 3 Power-Up Glitch!
  18. ^ Super Mario Bros 3 - AWESOME Wall Glitch!!!
  19. ^ YouTube - Super Mario Bros. 3 (Japan): The Fourth Whistle
  20. ^ Another Tanooki death in Super Mario Bros. 3
  21. ^ AxelRyman (May 24, 2009). Super Mario All Stars Super Mario Bros 3 Bowser Glitches. YouTube. Retrieved May 14, 2017.
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^ MrPyt1001 (January 12, 2016). Super Mario Bros 3 World 4 Fortress 2 Glitch. YouTube. Retrieved January 31, 2022.
  26. ^ Random Super Mario Bros 3 Co-Op (02)